100+ of the Best Date Ideas around Newcastle, Lake Macquarie & the Hunter That You’ll Love!

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Need ideas for a fun date night out? As parents, it’s so easy to get bogged down by everyday life and neglect the relationship you have with your partner. Newy with Kids has put together an epic list of fun and romantic things for couples to do in Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and the Hunter so make time to reconnect and get the romance back in your life. And it’s not just for date nights, there’s plenty of activities you can do during the day while kids are at childcare or school. Keep checking back as we’ll be adding more!

{BONUS: You don’t have to be a parent to enjoy them and they’re not just for your partner. Enjoy a date with your bestie or your mum}.

Need more date ideas? Check out the following categories.

Adventure | Art | At Home | Food & Drink | Free | Fun| History | Movies| Music | Relaxation | Sports | Unique | Weekends Away |Words

Dates for Adventure Lovers

It’s full action on these dates.

Explore Newcastle’s coastline

See Newcastle from the water with a Coast XP adventure boat tour. You and your date can enjoy great views of the coast, see dolphins and seals and enjoy being on the water. Enjoy sunset sessions during summer.

Go sand boarding at Stockton Dunes

If you prefer the sand to the water, go sand boarding in the dunes of Stockton with Sand Dune Safaris. This involves sliding down a massive slope on a nylon board. You’ll also enjoy a 4WD tour of the dunes to get there the giant sand bowl.

Ziplining at TreeTops Adventure Park

Get your heart pumping as you get up high in the treetops of Blue Gum Hills State Park. It’s both a mental and physical test as you face rope ladders, bridges, tunnels, cargo-nets and the adrenaline rush of zip lines at TreeTops Adventure Park.

Kayak around Lake Macquarie

Enjoy a leisurely paddle on Lake Macquarie. Out and About Adventures offers guided kayak tours from Wangi. You’ll explore Lake Macquarie from the water followed by morning tea.

Learn how to surf

Learn to surf in Newcastle or Lake Macquarie with Newcastle Surf School. You and your date can join a group lesson (or opt for a private group) to learn how to surf. You’ll be standing up on a board in no time. Regular lessons are held at Nobbys Beach and Blacksmiths Beach.

Learn to stand up paddle

Would rather try the trendier Stand Up Paddle? Learn how to stand up and propel yourself through the water with stand up paddle (SUP) lessons with at Horseshoe Beach in Newcastle. There’s group and private lessons available with SUP Newcastle.

Go for a bike ride

Grab a bike and helmet and go for a bike ride with your partner. There are loads of bike routes to choose in the region. Don’t have a bike? Hire a bike from docking stations at different locations throughout Newcastle. You can choose a regular bike or a Bykko electric bike.

Learn to ride a Segway

Experience the thrill of riding on a self-balancing Segway through Hunter Wetlands with NSW Segway. Ride your Segway through pine forest, over boardwalks and around diverse bush tracks and trails in Hunter Wetlands.

Scale up and try rock climbing

Push yourself out of your comfort zone and try indoor rock climbing at Pulse Climbing. There are easy climbs for beginners as well as Climbing 101 sessions if you need instruction.

Discover your inner ninja

Why should kids get all the fun? Explore Ninja Parc in Cooks Hill on a date. Tackle the obstacles of the indoor course including the Warped Wall.

Learn Parkour

Ever wanted to learn how to run, jump and climb around obstacles. Join Newcastle Parkour to learn about parkour and jumpstart your training. They have both outdoor and indoor sessions.

Run together

Want to spend some time together and get fit, walk or run at ParkRun for your date. It’s a free 5km timed run which takes place every Saturday at 8am. There are currently 11 Parkruns in the region. There’s also lots of plenty of walks and runs around Newcastle and Lake Macquarie you can train for.

Go fast around the track

Experience the rush of go karting and race your date at Go Karts Go! at Broadmeadow, Hunter Valley and Nelson Bay. If it’s a rainy day, try indoor go karting at Xtreme Karts Warners Bay.

Dates for Art Lovers

Heart art? Here’s some arty options to do on a date.

On the Last Friday of each month, Newcastle Art Gallery presents a tactile, sensory and social series of events that incorporate art, music, talks and interaction in a relaxed environment after dark. The gallery stays open until 8pm for this free event – no bookings required.

Discover outdoor art along the Sculpture Walk

The Warners Bay foreshore has been transformed. It now features an outdoor sculpture trail as well as exercise stations in the stretch between Eleebana and Warners Bay. The sculptures are created by nationally and internationally renowned artists. Among others, the works include a flying pig, an oversized Buddhist monk-child and a mauve bust of Charles Darwin. It’s a fun excursion combining culture with some physical exercise.

Wander through Maitland Regional Art Gallery and discover paintings, drawings, sculptures, photographs and prints in their collection. To learn more about the permanent collection, listen to the audio tour as you explore the gallery.

Catch the latest art exhibition at Museum of Art and Culture (MAC), the Hunter’s only waterfront gallery. They also occasionally schedule drop-in art classes for adults if you feel like sketching. Walk through the gallery grounds and visit the Sculpture Park, filled with numerous sculptures.

Drop in on an art class

Art House Studios hosts Easels on the Rooftop, a chilled-out art class. Everything is supplied, and you’ll take an original home with you.  It’s a fun way to spend a Friday night with a friend or partner, or come along and meet new friends. You can also enjoy some wine with your art at Pinot & Picasso on Hunter Street. Paint, sip and create a masterpiece.

Appreciate street art

Go for a stroll and look at different street art and graffiti around Newcastle. From big open murals in town by popular artists like Matt Adnate and Trevor Dickinson to the lesser-known back alley streets, there is art everywhere. 

Dates for Food & Drink Lovers

They say the way to one’s heart is through their stomach!

Indulge in chocolate

What’s more romantic than chocolate? Enjoy sweets with your sweetie at Coco Monde chocolaterie on Darby Street. Choose the Indulgence Sharing Plate for two and feast on Banoffee pie, Belgian chocolate mousse, Spanish churros, fresh strawberries and chocolate sauce.

Take a cooking class together

Learn how to whip up a delicious meal with a cooking class. You can take hands-on cooking classes at The Essential Ingredient, or learn how to make chorizo, salami, tapas and Lebanese street food at Pork Ewe Deli. Further afield in the Hunter Valley, Majors Lane Cooking School offers a range of chef-lead classes including Ribs and Brisket masterclass, Thai Street Food and Healthy Vietnamese.

Explore Newcastle on a  food tour

Go on a food trail with Underground Epicureans. Their tours are a dining experience where each item on the menu is enjoyed in a different location. You can choose from different themed tours including an East Feast in Newcastle East or a Breakfast Trail down Hunter Street.

Enjoy a meal with a view

Make some reservations at Scratchleys on Newcastle Harbour, Merewether Surfhouse at Merewether Beach, Moneypenny or The Landing at Honeysuckle and Deck 56 at Belmont or Lake Macquarie Yacht Club at Belmont.

Splurge on a gourmet meal

Without kids around, take the opportunity to savour a gourmet meal. Enjoy some fine dining at Subo and Restaurant Mason in Newcastle or venture to the Hunter Valley to enjoy Margan Restaurant, Muse Restaurant, Bistro Molines, Restaurant Botanica and EXP.Restaurant.

Eat around the world

Sample a new cuisine on your date. With so many international cafes and restaurants in Newcastle, you’ll be sure to find something you like. Try Spanish food at Bocados, Brazilian food at MEET, Ethiopian food at Habeesha, Japanese food at Susuru and Nagisa, Middle Eastern food at Sephardim, Asian inspired street food at Bao Brothers and Mexican street food at Antojitos.

Savour gelato

Go on a gelato date and sample different types of gelato at Popolo Artisan Gelato. They have numerous flavours of gelato including hazelnut, oreo, chocolate, salted caramel and red passion (perfect for a red-hot date!)

Enjoy a wine tasting in Newcastle

You don’t have to leave Newcastle to do a wine tasting. Sample a unique range of wines at the cellar door and winery at Inner City Winemakers in Wickham.

Explore the cellar doors in the Hunter Valley

For more extensive wine tasting, visit the Hunter Valley. There’s more than a hundred cellar doors  to visit ranging from large established wineries to boutique family-owned operations. Stay the night and combine wine tasting for a great weekend away.

Learn how to make cocktails

Shaken, not stirred. Learn how to make some classic cocktails in your own private masterclass at Coal & Cedar. You’ll learn how to make a Negroni, Amaretto Sour and a Classic Daiquiri.

Sip some whiskey

If you appreciate whiskey, take a private Whiskey master class at Coal & Cedar. You’ll learn about the history and distillation process of whiskey plus sample five different types.

Do a brewery tour

FogHorn Brewhouse offers brewery tours in their Newcastle location. You can learn about their beer and brewing processes behind the scenes at their 1800-Litre-custom built brewhouse. Tours run 2pm every Saturday and Sunday.

Enjoy tea for two

Share a pot of tea at The Tea Collective on Darby Street to unwind and reconnect. There’s a massive variety of teas to choose from including herbal, black, and green teas. Plus, you can enjoy dumplings and scones along with your choice of tea.

Make bread

Take the Sourdough 101 Workshop with the School of Sourdough and learn the art of beautifully baked bread. This full day immersive sourdough bread making class in Gloucester will allows you to experience the entire sourdough process.

Dates for Fun Lovers

Inject some fun into your date.

Go ten-pin bowling

Hit the bowling alley for some retro fun. Visit STRIKE at Charlestown Square or Superstrike at Maitland, or Salamander Bay and Dullboys at at Warners Bay.

Go lawn bowling

If you would rather bowl outside, enjoy some barefoot bowls at bowling clubs like Lowlands Bowling Club, Merewether Bowling Club, Hamilton North Bowling Club or Club Charlestown and Warners Bay Sports Club.

Laser each other

Need to settle some scores? Play laser tag at Strike Charlestown. You’ll have fun trying to laser each other. Go after 8pm if you want a kid-free environment as there’s no minors allowed after that.

Sing your heart out at karaoke

Sing to your sweetie at Strike Charlestown. They’ve got karaoke rooms with a big music selection ranging from the current top hits to classics. Make sure you snap a selfie as they have props and costumes to get into the diva mood.

Play a round of mini golf

Holey moley. Play some putt putt with your partner. Here is a list of places where you can enjoy mini golf in Newcastle, Lake Macquarie and Hunter. There is both indoor and outdoor courses.

Have a game of foot golf

Can’t decide between playing soccer or golf? Play foot golf at Beresfield Golf Course. This activity combines soccer on the golf course for  9 or 18 holes.

Skate on your date

Glide across the ice and go ice skating at Hunter Ice Skating Stadium in Warners Bay.

Escape from a room

Challenge yourself and your date to figuring out puzzles, cracking codes and finding keys to ultimately escape from an escape room. For those unfamiliar with escape rooms, these are a fully immersive experience where teams of 2 to 6 players are “locked” in a room and must solve a series of challenging puzzles to escape a movie-themed set in just 60 minutes. Whether you want to rob a bank, break out of prison or escape a serial killer’s lair, Escape Reality, a new escape room attraction in Newcastle. provides a memorable experience.

Dates for Music Lovers

Listen to some tunes on your date.

Enjoy a meal and music at Lizottes

Enjoy dinner and a show at Lizottes in Lambton. You and a date can enjoy a delicious meal plus catch local, national and international music acts.

Visit the Hunter Valley for a concert

Enjoy an outdoor concert or festival in the Hunter Valley.  The vineyards in the Valley are a favourite destination for many national and international acts.

Catch a live performance

If you and your date enjoy live performances, go out for a show at the Civic Theatre in Newcastle. It hosts a range of productions including musical acts, dance and theatre productions. Cessnock Performing Arts Centre also hosts a number of renowned acts throughout the year. Combine it with a stay at the vineyards.

Enjoy a classical concert

Enjoy classical music? Check out a performance at The Conservatorium in Newcastle. They regularly feature performances by artists from around the country and the world.

Dates for Movie Lovers

Kick back and enjoy a flick on the silver screen.

Splurge at the movies

We’re spoiled for choice with movie theatres and competitive prices around the region between Reading Cinemas, Event Cinemas and Hoyts. You can also treat yourself and your date to a premium movie experience with Gold Lounge at Reading Cinemas Charlestown or Gold Class at Event Cinemas Kotara. Kick back and enjoy a flick with wall to wall screens, fully reclining armchairs and food and drinks delivered to your seat throughout the movie

Support your local indie movie theatre

Catch a flick and a choc top at independent movie theatre The Regal in Birmingham Gardens. (CURRENTLY CLOSED) You and your date can enjoy complimentary drinks & treats at every session. If you’re in Lake Macquarie, visit Lake Cinema, an independent movie theatre in Boolaroo.

Go to a drive-in at Heddon Greta

Take your date to a drive-in movie at Heddon Greta Drive-in. They screen two movies every Friday and Saturday evening after dark. You’ll need a car and an FM radio, either in your car or a portable FM radio.

Dates for Sport Lovers

Get your heart racing and watch some local sports.

Enjoy rugby league at a Newcastle Knights game

Get out of the house and enjoy a Newcastle Knights rugby league game from March to September. The Knights play 12 home games this season.

Watch the world game at a Newcastle Jets match

If the world game is more to your liking, catch a Newcastle Jets game from October to April. The Jets play roughly 12 home games a season. Catch a home game especially a local derby with the Central Coast Mariners.

Dates for History Lovers

Learn about local history on a date

Do a tunnel tours of Fort Scratchley

Explore underneath Fort Scratchley as this former coastal defence installation is now a museum open to the public. Join a guided tour of Fort Scratchley through the extensive underground tunnel complex. You’ll learn about the history of the Fort including its role in the shelling of Newcastle by Japanese submarines in World War II.

Tour Maitland Gaol

Go for a torchlight tour of Maitland Gaol. You’ll discover stories of all sorts of heroes and villains that have resided in this 150-year-old institution. There’s also day time ex-warder tours  and the new escapes day tour which details amazing escapes from the facility.

Climb the tower at Christ Church Cathedral (currently suspended due to COVID-19)

This imposing Anglican cathedral dominates Newcastle’s skyline. Visitors are welcome and you’re able to go inside and see beautiful stained glass art, religious artifacts and tapestries. During certain hours of the week, visitors are able to climb the cathedral tower for a $10 donation. From the top, you can see 360-degree views which extend up and down the coastline and across the entire city including the working harbour.

Discover the past at Newcastle Museum

Without kids in tow, visit Newcastle Museum and learn about the history of the region.  It contains many exhibits which chart the development of the city from convict beginnings to a modern vibrant city. Be sure to catch the 6 minute BHP Steelmaking show which features special effects. It runs every hour on the hour and provides a fascinating and entertaining history about Newcastle’s steelmaking past.

Dates for Unique Lovers

Want to try something completely different on your date? How about these options?

Learn about bees

Ever wanted to see a beehive up close? Join Urban Hum for a two-hour beehive tour. The tour includes a talk all about the amazing world of honeybees followed by gearing up to get hands on with working hives in their Mayfield Teaching Apiary.

Enjoy cabaret

Catch a cabaret show at Kavon Theme Restaurant in Hamilton. Choose from horror comedy shows or cabaret burlesque. It’s sure to be a memorable night!

Go ghost hunting

If you’re looking for an interesting night, go ghost hunting with Renata Daniel from Newcastle Ghost Tours. As Newcastle is the second oldest settlement in New South Wales, you’ll learn a lot about our haunted past and hear stories about ghosts, murders and our amazing convict history.

Pat a shark or ray

Pat sharks and stingrays on a date at the Irukandji Shark & Ray Centre at Anna Bay. Change into a wetsuit and climb into one of four pools to get up close to these critters.

Try tobogganing

Speed downhill at Toboggan Hill Park in Port Stephens. You’ll travel down the 1km track with 11 bends at the speed of your choice. You control the brakes! Great adrenaline rush.

Try archery

Do your best Robin Hood impression with a bow and arrow at an archery range at Go Karts Go! in the Hunter Valley. Call ahead if you wish to book an archery session.

Dates for Relaxation Lovers

Unwind and reconnect on your date.

Relax with a massage

Chill out on your date with a relaxing couples massage. You and your date can relax side by side while you’re pampered with a massage at Royal Day Spa in Newcastle. Finish off your appointment with a Twin-share Jacuzzi Spa enjoying Strawberries, Chocolates and a glass of Champagne. You can also enjoy a couples massage in a double treatment room at endota spa Kotara, endota spa Green Hills or endota spa Newcastle

Enjoy the serenity

Escape into a sanctuary at Ubika Spa at Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley. The Spa Sanctuary Suite caters for couples who want to spend quality time together in the privacy of their own Spa within a Spa. You can enjoy full use of the Spa Sanctuary Suite’s spa bath, infrared sauna, separate bathroom and tranquil relaxation area. Unwind and rejuvenate while you enjoy some Australian wine and a fruit platter.

Practice yoga together

Get some balance in your life with a yoga class. There’s plenty of yoga studios around the region from Yoga Loft, Yoga for All in Newcastle CBD, Newcastle Yoga Space in Wickham and The Bhakti Tree in Mayfield where you can enjoy a vegetarian meal after your yoga class.

Dates for Word Lovers

Meet an author

If you and your partner love books, check out author events in Newcastle & the Hunter.

Maitland Regional Library is showcasing a number of high-profile, well-known and diverse speakers in their Look Who’s Talking program. This program showcases a diverse range of national and international authors and speakers both online and at exciting venues all over Maitland. Newcastle Region Library and Lake Macquarie Libraries also host author events throughout the year.

In addition to their flagship event each year in April, the Newcastle Writers Festival also presents author events throughout the year.

Visit a bookshop

If you love books, visit a bookshop on your date and find a literary masterpiece that you’ll both enjoy. If you’re after new books, visit Dymocks in Charlestown Square, Harry Hartog in Westfield Kotara and Green Hills or Maclean’s Booksellers on Beaumont Street.

You can also find treasures in used bookshops like Cook Hill Books & Records, Second Hand Bookery in Newcastle and Rices Bookshop in Tighes Hill, Qs Books in Hamilton and Arcade Books in Toronto.

Visit a street library

Combine a walk and love of books and visit a street library. It’s basically a micro library that people install in their front yard. People can walk by and take or donate a book to the Street Library as they wish, without checking them in or out. Go on a romantic stroll with your date and also find a book to read.

Dates for Weekend Away Lovers

Go away kid-free for the weekend. Splurge on local romantic hotspots include Spicers Vineyard Estate, Spicers Guesthouse The Convent Hunter Valley, Tower Lodge and Estate Tuscany in the Hunter Valley, Oaks Cypress Lakes Resort and Crowne Plaza Hunter Valley and The Anchorage in Port Stephens.

If you don’t wish to go too far, enjoy a staycation and stay harbourfront at Rydges Newcastle, Crystalbrook Kingsley (old City Council building) or near the beach at Novotel Newcastle Beach or Caves Coastal Bar and Bungalows. For a luxury stay, choose one of the boutique Cooks Hill Chalets. If your budget doesn’t allow for a splurge, find budget-friendly choices on Airbnb.

Dates for Free Fun Lovers

It doesn’t have to have to cost a thing to have a fun date. Here’s a few ideas.

Go for a romantic walk

There are numerous places to walk around the region. And without kids in tow, you can tackle the long walks or hilly walks. Choose from Bathers Way, Newcastle Harbour walk from Nobbys to Carrington, Warners Bay to Speers Point or the Shipwreck Walk in Stockton. Or do a stroll along the sand at any one of the many beaches around the region.

Gaze up at the stars

Wait until a clear night and then go stargazing. If your knowledge of astronomy is a bit rusty, spot planets and constellations using ABC Beginner’s Guide to the Night Sky.

Visit the Anzac Memorial Walk after dark

At night, the Memorial Walk is illuminated with lights. With the mood lighting, stars and waves crashing nearby, it makes for a romantic spot to stroll, sit or make out!

Enjoy an outdoor concert

Pack a picnic and enjoy outdoor music for free at Music in the Podium in Warners Bay (every Friday until March 25, 2022) or Friday Chill (until 18 February 2022) in Pacific Park in Newcastle.

Snap a selfie

Get a photo of the two of you at the Most Attractive Couple mural outside Newcastle Museum.

Use your brains at trivia night

Have fun using your brain at local trivia nights. There’s loads of free trivia at Newcastle pubs and who knows you might win a meat tray or even cash!

Challenge each other to Frisbee Golf

Bring a frisbee and play Frisbee Golf at Jesmond Park or at Styles Point Reserve in Rathmines.

Go geocaching

Got a smartphone and a sense of adventure? Go geocaching. It’s a real-world outdoor treasure hunting game using GPS-enabled devices.

Dates for Home Lovers (or those who can’t leave home)

It’s not always possible to go out for a date so plan a date night or date day at home when the kids are asleep or away.

Cook a meal together

Have fun cooking at home together. Take the time to talk while you chop, saute or grill.

Order food in

Just because you can’t go out doesn’t mean you have to miss out on a meal. Order a meal from your favourite restaurant or try a new place on UberEats.

Organise an at-home picnic

Wait until the kids are asleep and then spread out a picnic blanket either inside or on your back lawn. Enjoy a feast of cheese, nibblies and wine. Don’t forget dessert!

Enjoy game night with your partner

Hang out and play chess, checkers, Scrabble, Jenga, Guess Who? or backgammon. This gives you a chance to reconnect and use your brain.

Have a beer tasting night at home

Can’t get out to a brewhouse? Have fun tasting craft beer at home with a blind taste test. Just stock up on different types of beer.

Challenge each other on video games

Wait until the kids fall asleep and then start playing their Playstation, XBox or Nintendo. Go old school with classic games like Super Mario Bros.

Keep checking back for date ideas as we’ll be adding more!

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